Monday, April 20, 2015

Flying Pirate Half Marathon

Good morning and Happy Monday! I hope you had a great weekend.

I went to one of my favorite places this weekend- the Outer Banks- to run the Flying Pirate Half Marathon! I stayed in my friend's parent's beach house in Corolla and enjoyed a day of relaxing and beach walking before the race!

My happy place.
After a glorious Saturday of sunny (albeit slightly cool) weather and a GREAT carb-loading dinner, we woke up at about 5:45 AM to get ready and head to the race for the 7 AM start time!

Selfie at the starting line!
Ready to go!

Well-organized start with about 3,000 runners.
The course was mainly flat and ran through neighborhoods, the sound side of the island (lots of pretty beach houses to look at), around the Wright Brothers Memorial/Air Field and into trails in the woods. The trails and wooded area definitely slowed me down because of the uneasiness of my footing on some of the rocks/gravel and the hills! The last .75 mile was up and down trails in a wooded area and it was HARD. I kept thinking the hills were done and more kept coming. It reminded me of the Richmond Turkey Trot, but at that point I knew the end was near. When you leave the wooded area you go into a .1 mile downhill to the finish line, so that was good!

I haven't done much long-distance running since the marathon besides a 10-miler two weeks ago, and I knew I had some lingering tendon issues in my lower right leg. I went into this race with no expectations, but I knew I could easily PR since my running has gotten faster. I started the race with an 8:35 pace and hit the 10k spot at a good time. I knew I was on pace to PR, but I wasn't feeling GREAT the whole race- I could tell my body was tired. After halfway, I was really starting to feel the aches in my hips, knees and lower right leg. It was nothing awful, just body soreness. I slowed down gradually from then on out and my aches never got worse and would flow in and out. In the end, I still managed a 3 minute PR on a hard course!

My results! This was while the race was still going on, so the total number of runners and females grew. The race had about 3,000 finishers and my age group ended up being about 250. Being ranked 18th in my age group was awesome!
After the race, we hit up the post race party for food, cider (!), and an awesome band! My friend's uncle and aunt lived right at the end of the race course, so we had even more food there, and I got to shower before taking the bus back to where we parked our cars.

Post-race FOOD and BOOZE!


Finish line from her uncle and aunt's house (a few hours later...)
Overall, the race was good! Not my favorite race ever (I could have used more water stops), but the weather was perfect- not too hot or cold and slightly overcast- and the finish line party was great! For now I think I am taking a break from racing until the late summer or fall. I have done 4 races since January and all have been PR's, so I think a little resting is in order before marathon training season begins!

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